Former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi dies at 85

Hiroshi Yamauchi joined the company in 1949 and was its president until 2002.

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Former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi, who joined the company in 1949 and is widely credited for turning Nintendo into a leading video game developer, has died at age 85.

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Under Yamauchi's leadership, Nintendo diversified from its beginnings as a trading card company and introduced both gaming hardware, such as the NES, and arcade hits like Donkey Kong into market in the '80s, as well as establishing the development studios that would go on to create some of the industry's most enduring video game characters.

He also oversaw the release of the Super Nintendo, GameBoy, Nintendo 64, Virtual Boy, and GameCube.

Details of Yamauchi's passing have not been revealed; however, Nintendo has released a statement saying the company "is in mourning today from the sad loss of the former Nintendo president Mr Hiroshi Yamauchi, who sadly passed away this morning."

Yamauchi served as Nintendo president until 2002, when he was succeeded by Satoru Iwata. He worked as the chairman of Nintendo's board of directors until 2005, when he retired from the company.

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